Updated: Jan 18
Disengagement of employees is a serious concern. In Western Europe, only 10% of employees are engaged at work in comparison to the global average of 15% according to a Gallup (2017) Report. 19% of Western European employees are actively disengaged at work. A lack of engagement has negative impacts on performance and innovation.
It makes sense: Would anybody expect from a person who is disconnected to a company and its mission to come up with great ideas and to create successful innovations?
We all have experienced and observed at work what teams of motivated people with expertise can achieve. Team sports also provides numerous examples for success and failure on a weekly basis. Probably, most of us also know examples of what it looks like when an employee or an entire team loses connection to the company, its mission and purpose.
For instants, I remember interesting discussions in some of Europes most innovative regions many years ago, where my ideas and drafts for technology and service innovations got totally rejected as impossible. A few years later, Asian and North-American companies introduced solutions similar to my proposals to the markets. These episodes have a bitter taste, because they describe missed opportunities.
On the other hand, these episodes provide learnings, as they demonstrate, how important engagement, interest in current trends in society and technology are. But just being interested in relevant trends is not enough. You need the ability of anticipation, to see where developments might lead to, as I already described in „How to Become a Disruptor of Your Industry“. Obviously, it also takes imagination.
The Oxford Dictionary defines Imagination as „faculty or action of forming new ideas, or images or concepts of external objects not present to the senses.“
How could you put all the important information together and create new ideas for your business without imagination? How could you understand the potential of great ideas and proposals of your teams?
«A lack of imagination can cost companies millions and even billions!»
The reasons are simple: People with strong imagination can play with large amounts of information, create and combine ideas, and imagine future scenarios like solutions to today’s problems. The limits of imagination set also limits to innovation. If you can expand your imagination you also can create innovations that are disruptive to an industry or lay far beyond the obvious next thing of an industry.
It all comes down to human mindsets and behaviours, because without doubt „The Most Important Factor in Innovation is Humans“. Imagination and anticipation are two of several essential elements of an innovative mindset. Both capabilities can be developed and further improved. It’s up to you.
A lack of engagement is a serious problem for many companies with negative impact on innovation. It can become visible for example in missing interest in current developments in society or technology. Capabilities such as imagination and anticipation are important to see opportunities and create innovations. They belong to the innovative mindsets and behaviours. It’s worth the efforts to improve these capabilities and to develop innovative mindsets and behaviours. Remember the outstanding business success of truly innovative companies.
Get in touch with me today to discuss your needs and desires and find out how I can help you and your organization to reach growth, profit, and success through technology innovation. Schedule Your FREE Discovery Call Now.
Sources and Recommendations
Gallup (2017). State of the Global Workforce Report. Retrieved from https://www.gallup.com/workplace/238079/state-global-workplace-2017.aspx?utm_source=2013StateofGlobalWorkplaceReport&utm_medium=2013SOGWReportLandingPage&utm_campaign=2013StateofGlobalReport_Redirectto2017page&utm_content=download2017now_textlink#formheader
Oxford Dictionary (June 30, 2019). Imagination. Retrieved from https://www.lexico.com/en/definition/imagination
Thiebus, S. (May 30, 2017). Thoughts About Innovation. Retrieved from https://www.thiebus.com/post/thoughts-about-innovation
Thiebus, S. (June 11, 2019). The Most Important Factor in Innovation are Humans. Retrieved from https://www.thiebus.com/post/the-most-important-factor-in-innovation-is-humans
Thiebus, S. (June 20, 2019). How to Become a Disruptor of Your Industry. Retrieved from https://www.thiebus.com/post/how-to-become-a-disruptor-of-your-industry